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Prominent Former Ethiopian Refugees Return to Offer World-Class Education

Prominent Former Ethiopian Refugees Return to Offer World-Class Education

Rebecca Haile, the prominent author and Harvard educated one-time Wall Street lawyer has inaugurated a co-ed secondary boarding school – Haile-Manas Academy (HMA) in Debre Berhan, one of the fastest growing economic hubs in Ethiopia. The school is to make space available to promising students, despite one's financial status.

This weekend, it welcomed the first batch of its grade nine students.

"The lure of the country I knew first, and fundamentally, pulled me back”, the author of ‘Held at a Distance’, a self-reflection memoir on her life as a daughter of refugees in the midst of the 1974 Derg revolution said.

Upon her plan to return, she co-founded the Ethiopia Education Initiatives (EEI), to give superior education and discipline as future leaders of Ethiopia – opportunities that are rarely afforded within the nation.

Rebeca is a sister of Sossina Haile who now serves as a board member of the new school. Sossina is a prominent chemist and is the adjunct professor of Materials Science & Engineering with Northwestern University. She is hailed for developing the solid acid fuel cells.

While Kenya is known for having such international boarding schools, the school is seen as a pioneering model establishment.

“Through depth of inquiry, hands-on problem solving, and the sustained shared experiences that a residential setting allows, we build resilient, independent thinkers, purposeful, community-minded individuals and engaged, enterprising young citizens”, the school announced.